50 years after the commencement of diplomatic relations between Israel and Germany, the book by its provocative and sharpened phrasing as well as the event on Friday, encouraged to reflect oneself as a German respectively Israeli – in a critical and humorous way at the same time.
“Square, praktish, good” – the slogan of a famous German chocolate brand is displayed on the wrapping of the Ritter Sport, the one Yair is ostentatiously holding out to the audience of the Beit Zafta theatre in Tel Aviv. “Praktish”, a word that is perfectly tailored to the German character, claims Gad Yair, sociologist at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and author of his recently published book “love is not praktish”, in which he portrays the typical German from the point of view of Israelis who are currently living in Germany.
In search of a national German character from an Israeli perspective, Yair detects a bipolar and schizophrenic character: A division among the heart and the mind; among the function and humanity. The contemporary reports on “The German” are linked to the cultural foundations of the Germans: Mann, Goethe, Luther. Yair‘s line of argumentation is based on surveys that are mainly conducted through interviews, internet surveys and discussions within Facebook groups.
The colorful programme was designed in a way that among book excerpts of “Love is not praktish” and streamed clips of “Rudolf and the conflict”, satirical videos of how Israel seems to Germans respectively of an Israeli masquerading as a German, famous Israeli journalists and authors who publish works on Germans provided small inputs of their funny and thought-provoking experiences in Germany and with Germans:
Adi Alfon who has been living in Germany for many years now told us of his first Christmas dinner in Germany, where he was wondering how accurately 16 portions were counted for 16 guests; the history professor and author Fania Oz-Salzberger spoke about her personal love-hate relationship towards Berlin and about the Israeli art and student scene that has a positive and stimulating impact on the city itself.
The event was organized in cooperation with our partners Kav Adom – the Kibbutz HaMeuchad Publishing House and the Hebrew University Jerusalem.